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MI Sportsmen Aim for the Green

February 21, 2008

Lansing, MI – Michigan sportsmen have climate change in their sights. About 40 sporting groups have signed a letter asking Congress to help the country make major progress against climate change. They say for Michigan, it should have an important side benefit: helping the state grow a whole new generation of "green collar" jobs in the clean energy industry.

Zoe Lipman, with the National Wildlife Federation's Great Lakes Office, says this kind of development could help replace the state's dwindling manufacturing economy. Michigan already has the equipment and transportation systems in place to manufacture wind turbines, and is a leader in solar technology.

"Michigan has one of the largest, if not the largest, manufacturer of poly crystal and silicone, which goes into solar panels."

Lipman adds Michigan's sportsmen have a keen interest in halting climate damage. The time they spend in the outdoors has made them vigilant about changes in weather, habitat, fish and wildlife, and they are committed to preserving the state's wild places.

"Sportsmen have committed decades and millions of man-hours to restoring Michigan's natural resources, and climate change is a risk to that."

Nationwide, almost 700 hunting, fishing and other sportsmen's groups also have signed the letter.

Deborah Smith/Eric Mack, Public News Service - MI